I don’t often buy myself a box of chocolates, but at such a sweet little size I found it hard to resist. My focus is usually on getting out of there as fast as possible. It’s not the most relaxing of food-purchasing experiences you’ll ever have!
So then, what’s inside the box?
Inspired by the colorful Macarons, the airy and light meringue pastries from France, they have created these delicious mini pralines à la Macaron with great attention to detail and craftsmanship. And because they are so small and light, you can enjoy more diversity.
Thinking these would be based on the newly released Macaron tablets, I was super surprised to find they’d taken the time to craft each chocolate into a little half-Macaron shape. Utterly adorable! Based on that level of effort, I changed my mind on the price and decided these would make a lovely supplementary gift for someone.
The Green One
Starting with the green chocolate, I imagined this would be based on the Pistachio bar…
Seductive pistachio crème with pastry and toasted almond pieces wrapped in fine milk chocolate.
The small praline has a pale green creme filling with little nuts and tiny crunchy macaron bits. Those pieces are sweet with a distinctively sugary crunch, which really did make me think “Oh, Macaron!”. There’s not quite enough of them, if you ask me – but I was pleased to find them in the mix.
The chocolate to pistachio ratio is a little bit off for my tastes, as the chocolate somewhat gets in the way of the nutty flavour. It doesn’t utterly obliterate it though, as there’s still a discernible pistachio flavour underneath.
I suspect this is more successful in a bar format, but I think it’s difficult for most of these gently flavoured creme fillings to compete against rich and thickly creamy Lindt chocolate. Because it does that ‘mouth coating’ thing as it melts, I often think the fillings don’t quite shine as they should.
The White One
I was really pleased to find a white chocolate praline in here. It’s well documented that I’m not a huge fan of fruit flavours mixed with milk chocolate and lemon is certainly one of the flavours I prefer with white. It’s an interesting change from their tablet format too, as the 100g bar is coated in milk chocolate.
White chocolate compliments the gently zingy and creamy lemon filling, rather than fighting against it. The creme again included tiny bits of nuts and little macaron meringue pieces (though again, not enough of them). This was my favourite variety from the Mini Pralines box.
The Pink One
So this cute little macaron shaped chocolate is cast out of a darker chocolate type. It’s got a little semi-sweet chocolate bitterness to start with and finishes with a quite deep cocoa flavour compared to the milkier variety on offer here. It’s not a full-on dark chocolate, as far as I’m concerned, but definitely leans towards having a higher cocoa content.
The contrast is nice, particularly when viewed as part of a collection. With two milk, one white and one slightly darker, semi-sweet chocolate type, it adds variety and interest to the box.
Like the other pralines, the strawberry creme centre contains little macaron pieces and roasted almond bits. Interestingly, there’s a light fresh-fruit strawberry tang to the flavour and I think you’d be forgiven for wondering if they’d snuck some raspberries in too (they haven’t). That being said, the filling isn’t really all that potent against the chocolate shell.
Of the three, this was my least favourite as a whole – though I really liked the darker chocolate choice. It’s just that red fruit and chocolate don’t mix for me in general.
The Chocolate One
Now this one was really, really nice. With a good layer of roasted almond pieces along the top and a rich, truffley chocolate filling – I was very happy to find three of these pralines in the box!
Whilst the nut crumbs don’t offer much by way of flavour initially, they add a really nice textural component… and once all the chocolate has melted away, I found the almonds lingered and added a welcome creamy nuttiness to the finish.
Surprisingly, though I’m sure they’re in the mix somewhere, the macron pieces for the filling were AWOL. Whilst I noticed the few bits of them in the other pralines, they were most definitely lost here. As this chocolate seemed to have the largest nut layer, I’m wondering whether this was a contributing factor to not noticing the macron element.
If I was to judge this as a “chocolate macaron” flavoured chocolate, I’m not sure it would pass the test. But as a “chocolate truffle with almond” – it most definitely works. Yum!
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